A new poll puts non-candidate Anthony Weiner in second place
If former congressman Anthony Weiner were a mayoral candidate, he'd have more Democratic support than any primary contender other than City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, according to an NBC New York Marist poll.
Back in February, when Marist last polled, Quinn got 37 percent from Democrats, near the 40 percent level needed in the primary to avoid a run-off. Public Advocate Bill de Blasio had 15 percent, former comptroller Bill Thompson was at 14 percent, and the current city comptroller, John Liu, was at 11 percent.
The new poll puts Weiner at 15 percent, behind Quinn, who would be at 26 percent.
De Blasio, who like Weiner is a white, outer-borough progressive, is down to 11 percent, as is Thompson. Liu is at 12 percent.
While the match-up figures against the whole field were good for Weiner, overall opinion of him among Democratic voters was less flattering.
Only 40 percent of Democrats say they want Weiner to run for mayor, compared to 47 who do not.
Weiner has a 45-41 percent favorability rating among Democrats, including a 52-35 favorability rating among Democratic voters aged 30-44.
His name recognition is among the highest of any of the candidates running. Only 15 percent of Democratic voters said they never heard of him.
The only other candidate with comparable name recognition is Quinn. Only 18 percent of Democratic voters say they haven't heard of her. And her 59-23 favorably rating crushes Weiner's 45-41 favorability rating among Democrats. (35 percent of Democratic voters say they haven't heard of de Blasio; 36 percent say the same about Thompson, and 28 say it of Liu.)
If Weiner runs, the two candidates who seem most affected are Quinn and de Blasio.
With Weiner in the race, Quinn's support among Democrats in Manhattan drops 7 points, from 41 percent to 33 percent. In Brooklyn, her vote drops 13 points, from 32 percent to 18 percent.
De Blasio's drops are smaller, but he is working with a smaller base to begin with.
De Blasio drops 4 points among Manhattan Democrats, from 16 to 12, with Weiner in the race; and five points among Democrats in Brooklyn, from 17 percent to 12 percent.
Weiner's biggest impact is among Democrats who describe themselves as moderate.
Quinn drops 7 points, from 31 percent, to 24 percent, among those voters with Weiner in the race. De Blasio drops 6 points, from 20 percent to 14 percent, among them. Among liberals, Quinn only loses 4 points, going from 34 percent to 30; de Blasio drops 2 points, from 13 percent to 11 percent.
Lots of provisos here. The polling is early and disproportionately a measure of name recognition; the candidates have not spent money on paid media, or spent much time attacking one another; eventual support for Thompson in particular is likely undercounted; Weiner, to be clear, is not yet a candidate.
(Example of a trend that is unlikely to hold up: Quinn is leading among African-American voters, with 27 percent of the vote. Thompson, the only African-American in the race, trails with 20 percent.)
Quinn, the only woman in the race, has a double-digit lead over her rivals among Democratic women.